Action camera case allows iPhone familiarity in the surf
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 5 May, 2015 - The action sports camera industry is booming ($1billion!) and consequently we're seeing several interesting tweaks to the GoPro action camera riff, from 360 degree cameras with action mounts, to waterproof point-and-shoot units from the big companies like Sony.
The Optrix by Body Glove is the latest change up to this group, but it’s not a camera. It's a case. The Optrix expands on the basic knowledge that most people have a smartphone with them and that the majority of the world’s digital images are shot with these smartphones. The thinking goes, "Not everyone carries a camera, but everyone carries phone.”
This new category has been pioneered by a small technology company named Optrix.
The Optrix is a waterproof iPhone housing with interchangeable lenses (macro, wide, telephoto and normal). Users can capture and edit those moments typically reserved for GoPros, then share them through one single device, their iPhone.
Using The Optrix
The case fits snuggly over the users mobile device. It’s hard plastic with a thin sheet of clear material to go over the screen. Once your mobile device is secured and airtight within the case (a method achieved by ‘burping’ the Optrix case) your iPhone will be ready for the water. Note that the touchscreen is difficult to use when your fingers are wet, so the iPhone camera shutter must be activated by the side volume buttons.
The side volume buttons on the Optrix case are intentionally designed to be difficult to press; done so that users don't accidientally record video. Getting used to using the volume knobs to capture video and photos took some getting used to.
There was no leaking of the case, just be sure the lense o-rings are in place when changing lenses. Because the lenses are external and jut out, they don't get water drops on them. We had good, clear results with very little lense-spotting.
The Optrix by Body Glove has a special mount to make it surfboard friendly called the Optrix SeaSucker. This device will also work on boats, cars, paddleboards, etc.
Filming and editing is done on one familiar device, your iPhone. Many of us aren’t skilled at Final Cut Pro and so this device eliminates that barrier between action camera and editing on a computer. You simply edit on your iPhone like with any other clips.
What We Liked:
Familiarity of iPhone editing
Familiarity of iPhone social sharing
Comes with lenses: Macro, Wide, Normal and Telephoto
What We Didn’t Like:
Anxiety of losing your iPhone in the shorebreak
Touch screen sensitivity difficult with wet fingers, must use volume controls to shoot.
The Optrix by Body Glove is best suited for anyone secure in holding onto their iPhone in the surf. But there's heaps more water activity worth capturing that doesn’t involve a roll in the shore break. Boating, flatwater SUPing, snorkeling, swimming pools and other ‘light water’ activities.
Overall we liked the Optrix Body Glove. It’s a great, affordable option to action cams and delivers everything an action cam can (excluding heavy water use) without the $400 price tag. Also, editing and sharing your clips is simple and instantaneous because you do it from your phone.